Chinese participation in the Galileo Program, Europe's satellite navigation system, has been furthered with the signing of three contracts in Beijing.
China Galileo Industries (CGI) signed the contracts with the National Remote Sensing Center of China (NRSCC), which is responsible for the implementation of the Galileo Program in China.
The three contracts deal with the application of the program and include a Fishery Application System, Special Ionospheric Studies and Location Based Services Standardization.
The Galileo Program is being developed by the European Commission and the European Space Administration with the aim of building an independent civil global satellite navigation system.
"The signing of these three contracts means further involvement for Chinese entities in the Galileo Program. More contracts will be signed in the near future," said Ma Songde, vice-minister for science and technology.
Rainer Grohe, executive-director of the Galileo Joint Undertaking (GJU), said: "Today we have entered a new phase. Chinese entities are now actively working on the development of the Galileo System."
CGI, founded in December 2004, is the overall prime contractor for China's projects on the Galileo Program.
China joined the Galileo Program in October 2003, with the signing of the Galileo Program Cooperation Agreement on Civil Global Satellite Navigation.
(China Daily July 29, 2005)